Diego Moreno

Guardians of Memory

“His truth shall be thy shield and buckler… A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. Ps. 91:4,7.”

This series originated with “Los Panzudos Mercedarios”, the stout guardians of the neighborhood of La Merced in San Cristóbal de las Casas in Chiapas, México. The Panzudos represent the sins: the more sins a person has to expiate, the bigger and uglier his attire will be, the better to cure his sins. These figures herald the feast day of Our Lady of La Merced and accompany her, purifying themselves in the process. The announcement is made as the figure of the Virgin Mary passes by, carried on the shoulders of her bearers, with a retinue of Aztecs, Catholics, and Moors mounted on horseback. They are dressed as Arabs and with their faces painted. This attire represents the Muslims who invaded and occupied Spain between 702 and 1492. Integrated this ancestral imaginary with the exploration of familiar universe. I try to investigate the links, the monstrosity, disease and death. I explore the tunnels of representation of domestic space. Fusing it with pre-Hispanic traditions and the apocalyptic visions of the Catholic religion. This work gives new meaning to the complex tangle of the concealed and the visible, the individual and the collective subconscious, on the highly complex map of coexisting cultures and beliefs in contemporary Mexico.





Diego Moreno was born in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas, México in 1992. Since 2012 he has studied photography at the Art Gymnasium Chiapas. He won a scholarship for a Photo Narrative and New Media course at the Pedro Meyer Foundation awarded by the World Press Photo Association of 2014. Graduated of Contemporary Photography Seminar from Center for the Image in 2015. Selected by The British journal of photography as one of the emerging photographers to follow in the world as a talent issue 2016, in London England. Moreno has been creditor to the prize acquisition of the X Biennial 2015 Puebla de los Angeles in Mexico. Also in 2015 he has been granted with the scholarship “JOVENES CREADORES” by the National System of Creators in México FONCA/CONACULTA. He was finalist within Latin American Identity Cuartoscuro contest in 2016 and finalist within International Photography Award Emergentes dst 2016 in Braga, Portugal. Nominated for the Joop Swart Masterclass of World Press Photo in Amsterdam in 2016 and its Latin American Broadcast in Mexico in 2015. She has participated in group and Individual exhibitions in Mexico, Chile, Taiwan, Malaysia, Ámsterdam, London, Spain, E.U and Brazil.


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Diego Moreno

3 thoughts on “Diego Moreno – Guardians of Memory”

  1. I am waiting for the film ‘We need to talk about Mexico’
    It sure is one fucked up schizophrenic culture.
    It is the very normalcy of the settings of these scenes that reinforces that for me.

  2. To echo John, just when you think you have seen everything, this comes along. Wow.
    Thanks you Diego, really good work.


  3. “To echo John, just when you think you have seen everything, this comes along. Wow.”


    Calm, placid, spooky work.


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